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Gender-specific abnormalities in the serotonin transporter system in panic disorder

Overview of attention for article published in The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, May 2013
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Gender-specific abnormalities in the serotonin transporter system in panic disorder
Published in
The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, May 2013
DOI 10.1017/s1461145712000776
Pubmed ID

Dara M. Cannon, Jacqueline M. Klaver, Summer A. Klug, Paul J. Carlson, David A. Luckenbaugh, Masanori Ichise, Wayne C. Drevets


The central serotonergic system has been implicated in the pathophysiology of panic disorder (PD) by evidence of abnormally elevated serotonin-turnover, reduced pre- and post-synaptic 5-HT(1A)-receptor sensitivity and binding and clinical improvement during administration of agents that enhance serotonergic transmission. Polymorphisms in genes that putatively influence serotonergic neurotransmission increase the vulnerability for developing PD specifically in males. We tested the hypotheses that serotonin transporter (5-HTT) binding is elevated in PD subjects vs. healthy controls in regions where in vivo evidence exists for both elevated 5-HTT and 5-HT(1A) receptor levels in PD and investigated whether the extent of this difference depends upon gender. Volunteers were out-patients with current PD (n=24) and healthy controls (n=24). The non-displaceable component of 5-HTT binding-potential (BP(ND)) was measured using positron emission tomography and the 5-HTT selective radioligand, [(11)C]DASB. PD severity was assessed using the PD Severity Scale. The 5-HTT-BP(ND) was increased in males with PD relative to male controls in the anterior cingulate cortex (F=8.96, p(FDR)=0.01) and midbrain (F=5.09, p(FDR)=0.03). In contrast, BP(ND) did not differ between females with PD and female controls in any region examined. The finding that 5-HTT-binding is elevated in males but not in females with PD converges with other evidence suggesting that dysfunction within the central serotonergic system exists in PD, and also indicates that such abnormalities are influenced by gender. These findings conceivably may reflect a sexual dimorphism that underlies the greater efficacy of serotonin reuptake inhibitor treatment in females vs. males with PD.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 33 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Spain 1 3%
Unknown 32 97%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 8 24%
Researcher 6 18%
Student > Bachelor 5 15%
Student > Master 4 12%
Other 2 6%
Other 4 12%
Unknown 4 12%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Psychology 11 33%
Medicine and Dentistry 6 18%
Social Sciences 3 9%
Neuroscience 3 9%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 2 6%
Other 4 12%
Unknown 4 12%